Animals use less intelligent language, so one may assume that human language is unintelligent to extraterrestrial life. We use technology to perceive senses that we do not naturally have (e.g., seeing X-rays or hearing <20Hz). Does this mean that one could use AI to map out a "language evolution" and use it to communicate in ways that we normally can't (just like using technology to see or hear)? I'm not talking so much about echolocation; I refer to a "natural progression" from syntax, semantics, pragmatics, etc. into "evolved" speech.

Edit: For clarity, what I specifically ask about is this: animals (e.g., chimpanzees, bonobos, and dolphins) understand phonology and morphology but not (due to limited brain capacity) complex syntax. This is seen in the infamous case of a monkey who could not distinguish between sentences, "Sue loves Sam" and "Sam loves Sue." Therefore, language (to them) is phonology, morphology, and very basic syntax. To us, language is complex phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, pragmatics, etc. We think that this is a "peak evolution" of language, but for all we know we could be like monkeys who do not know the possibilities. With an AI that has unlimited cognition, could we find a way to run algorithms that could help AI to accidentally stumble upon a natural progression (i.e., into a sub-field of language that we did not previously know of)?


closed as off-topic by StephenG, We are Monica., EDL, Halfthawed, Cyn says make Monica whole Aug 23 at 1:06

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

  • "This question does not appear to be about worldbuilding, within the scope defined in the help center." – StephenG, We are Monica.
If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    $\begingroup$ This already happening (sort of): Facebook put cork in chatbots that created a secret language $\endgroup$ – Alexander Aug 22 at 23:40
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    $\begingroup$ Hello and Welcome to Worldbuilding RoCo. Unfortunately I am not sure this is a WorldBuilding question or a question about the current state of AI. Can you please clarify what you are referring to when you use the term AI? In the real world sense, they are simply algorithms that are great at detecting and emulating patterns, in a Sci-Fi sense, they can be super intelligent and all knowing. $\endgroup$ – Shadowzee Aug 22 at 23:48
  • $\begingroup$ @Shadowzee This is definitely a world-building question since I don't think that the context would be appreciated in a more scientific part of the StackExchange community, but I am also looking for a realistic answer. $\endgroup$ – RoCo Aug 22 at 23:57
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    $\begingroup$ @RoCo Just because it wouldn't fit in with the forum rules elsewhere please don't assume you can post it here without regard for our rules. I suggest you study the help center in more detail specifically regarding the rules about how to How to Ask, then re-read the comments. We have very well trained scientists of wide and varied specialties here, and have rigorous requirements. Please re-read our definition of off-topic. $\endgroup$ – We are Monica. Aug 23 at 0:13
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    $\begingroup$ To @Renan's point, I do believe Jane Goodall considers the language of the primates to be quite intelligent indeed. $\endgroup$ – Cort Ammon Aug 23 at 5:07

It depends on what you mean by 'complex'. If by 'complex' you mean 'difficult to talk with', than Navajo is the current winner and it's very easy to create a language unpronounceable by humans. If you mean 'ability to specify things with precision', then American English is moving towards that at a pretty rapid clip, seeing as the language is constantly updated when new concepts are discovered and a lot of other languages will borrow the English words for them (although frequently the English words that are used aren't English in origin, so ... shrugs make of that what you will). A computer can expedite the process, but making a new language from scratch is unnecessary.

If by 'complex' you mean 'a language beyond the singularity that approaches language with a brand new paradigm to the point where it's a third-dimensional cube where all other languages are two dimensional square', then the answer is 'no.' If humans can't envision it, programs written by humans can't either.

Answer to your edit: I can't prove that a sub-field of the language exists which we would natural progress to such that a computer algorithm could fine it doesn't exist because negatives can't be proven - but that's just conjecture.


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